Billy Joe Saunders is getting the big fight he’s been waiting for he competes against Canelo Alvarez in a super middleweight title unification bout on Saturday from AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas on DAZN (excluding Mexico).
Saunders will be the second Englishman to face Alvarez in his last three fights. Six days before Christmas Alvarez dominated Callum Smith to win the WBA and WBC super middleweight titles and become world champions in four divisions.
The WBO super middleweight title list is one of the mentality that Smith shouldn’t have gotten into the fight with five weeks’ notice and taken more time to prepare for the man who many believe is the best Pound-for-pound fighters in sports. Saunders believes Smith only took up the fight on short notice for one reason.
“You know, and I can just go and think he was offered a hell of a lot of money and I think he was probably put in the same position as me,” Saunders said on DAZN’s “Off The Cuff.” “And he took the money route. In my opinion he wasn’t at his best. I’m not taking anything away from Canelo, but when you box someone like him it takes two months to take care of everything. What comes with this? If you think that you take it with five weeks notice, your bags are packed, you are on the plane, you are over there, you are [doing] Media, it’s you, you’re in the ring, the lights are on, you don’t know what’s going on. No no no. This is not proper preparation.
“And I don’t care if they say he stays in the gym, he stays fit. Mentally, that means you need this mental side of things to find your way in this crowded situation, and not just to be blinded by the money before you. Because I think this happened to him. I think he went in for the money, not the fate of being the man who dethroned Canelo. Because he’s a good fighter, Smith, and I just don’t . I don’t think that was his night, definitely not. “
In preparation for Alvarez, Saunders (30-0, 14 KOs) didn’t bother to see too much of Alvarez-Smith. Why you might ask Because Saunders immediately felt that Smith had the wrong schedule to get the job done.
“I can give you my opinion on what I think happened,” Saunders said. “But I can’t really give you my full opinion on the fight because I’m being honest with you – I’ve only seen the highlights and I’ve only seen about two minutes of them and turned it off because I rate Callum Smith as a fighter. But I think he went in there depending on his strength and size, and that doesn’t work. The game plan is completely wrong, he fought completely wrong. “